Last week, we met Grant and Marie (and toddler) ever-so-slightly off-Buford Highway for one of our frequent eat-up meet-ups, this time with Ashley, Steve and his sister Laura (who last dined with us at Nam Phuong) in tow.
In addition to being a brightly colored and nicely appointed restaurant, Batavia is also a small grocery store. Marie and I had a good time perusing the goods after we put in our orders. I have a little comparison shopping to do before I can say for sure, but I am thinking this may become my go-to spot for coconut cream.
Thanks to Marie and Grant’s helpful knowledge of indonesian fare, they ordered sans menu, getting some krupuk udang (shrimp crackers) to get us started off right.
After only brief deliberation, Adam and I ordered the sambal goreng udang/pete and the nasi padang. We owe Grant for the nasi padang, since he asked about the dish, which doesn’t have a description on the menu. The description sounded so good we changed plans on the spot.
As is typical in our BuHi experiences, we were warned about the spiciness of the sambal goreng, but we forged ahead as we are wont to do. Ohhhhh lawdy. This dish was delicious but it nearly killed me. It has a flavorful slow burn that lasts a long time and builds up cumulatively as you continue to eat. By the time I was 2/3rds of the way through my half of the entree, I had long-since blown out my sinuses, my ears were ringing and I could hear my blood pounding in them, and my head felt strangely light – as if it were coming off of my shoulders.
Despite being armed with two Epi pens, I opted to lay down the fork… something practically unheard of for me. I was worried that the spiciness was masking an allergic reaction to the sator, which I had never tried before. Nope, it was just so incredibly spicy that I was practically having an out-of-body experience. Adam made it through his half but he paid for it later, if you know what I mean…
In short, believe them when they say it’s hot. But it’s also quite delicious, so if you’re brave then go for it! I would do it again paired with an extra side of rice, and with an avocado shake at the ready.
Our other dish also had some kick. Some of the same red sauce from the sambal goreng was on the egg. I was so out of it by the time I hit this dish that I barely touched my half, only drinking the delicious curry soup in the restaurant.
I opted to suck on my avocado shake the rest of the time, get a to-go box, and eat the rest of the leftovers at home the next day. To perk up the rice, I fried it and mixed in the rest of the ingredients. It still set my head ablaze, though not nearly as badly. Yum!
Ashley got the bakmi ayam, a delicious-looking noodle bowl with accompanying soup. Here are her thoughts on her meal and Batavia in general:
“It’s a surprising little gem considering it’s tucked away down Shallowford. The prices were nice and low and the portions were incredible (I got three portions out of mine)! The various noodle dishes I tasted were all good with their own slight distinctions. The service was kind, though spotty. Overall, I’d say 3.5 stars.”
I somehow don’t have a photo of Stephen’s satay plate. Called sate on the menu, the plate came with chicken, pork, or lamb and was $7.49. Here are Stephen’s thoughts: “The service felt scattered and unfocused, but the food was well-priced and was of reasonably high quality. Overall, I would give it 3.5 stars.”
Everyone seemed to enjoy their food and have a good time with good conversation. The staff definitely noticed that Adam and I nearly expired whilst eating their food, and we earned a friendly jab from our server for being foolhardy white folks out of our depth. But that’s okay, I’d do it again. Besides, there was plenty on the menu that isn’t as fiery. If you’ve never been to Batavia, I definitely recommend swinging by! 4 stars!
Do also check out Grant’s wonderful telling of the Marie, Let’s Eat perspective on this trip!
3640 Shallowford Rd
Atlanta, GA 30340